They way the salty and smokey flavors in the bacon play with the bitterness of the Brussels Sprouts is about as complementary as food gets. I add the shallots for a bit of sweetness when they caramelize. Finally finished with a squeeze of lemon which helps cut the greasy flavors from the bacon fat and offset the bitterness in the Brussels sprout.
With Thanksgiving Day arriving in less than a week I thought I would do a trial run of my Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Shallots.
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon and Shallots
- 6 ounces thick cut or slab bacon, diced
- 1 pound Brussels sprouts, cut in half through the stem
- 2 medium shallots, julienned
- 2 - 3 fluid ounces white wine or chicken stock (I prefer wine)
- Juice half a lemon plus wedges for serving
- salt and pepper to taste
|Cut side down in the pan|
Continue to cook covered cut side down for 5 minutes. Remove the cover and add the shallots. Stir the Brussels sprouts so they are laying in the pan in random orientations and the shallots have contact with the bottom of the pan. Saute for 8 - 10 more minutes string occasionally to prevent the shallots from burning.
Add the bacon and stir so it is distributed evenly. Add the remaining wine and cover for 5 more minutes. Remove the cover and turn off the heat. Add the lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately with wedges of lemon.
Don't feel like you have to stick to the cooking times strictly. The goal here is to get some browning on the Brussels sprouts and caramelize shallots. Covering and uncovering helps steam the Brussels sprouts with allowing them to become soggy or sitting in a lot of liquid which would be bitter. You are going to have to employ a little judgement so as not to overcook the Brussels sprouts. I have been cooking this recipe for many years and I don't think I have done it exactly the same way twice and usually employ my judgment for how long to cook at each step.